Found g3 iMac in garbage!

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by nickwc, May 25, 2009.

  1. nickwc macrumors newbie

    Jan 8, 2009
    Hi! I was lucky enough to find imac g3 today in my complex's garbage area. It had the keyboard and mouse but no power cord!! So I just brought it home and used a cord from a old monitor, viola! Now my question is this... Will an Airport Express work to be able to use my wifi? Because due to the g3 guide I cannot use a airport card.

    Here are the specs:

    iMac G3 (333 MHz)

    The iMac G3 333 MHz was introduced on April 14, 1999. The only change to this iMac model is the processor speed.

    PowerPC G3 Processor 333 MHz (66 MHz bus)
    Tray loading 24x CD-ROM
    6 GB IDE Hard Disk Drive
    32 MB of RAM (expandable to 384 MB)
    6 MB of VRAM
    Not compatible with AirPort cards
    Ports: Ethernet, USB 1.1, 56k Modem, Stereo Audio In and Out

    The iMac 333 MHz shipped with Mac OS 8.5 along with AppleWorks.
    The highest version of the Mac OS that is officially supported on the iMac is Mac OS X 10.3 "Panther".

    This iMac is also known as Revision D, but it is referred to officially by Apple as the "iMac 333 MHz"

    I want to install panther as well, but only if I can have it retrieve wifi some how. It is running os 8.6, so will I have to get os 9 first?

  2. TwinCities Dan macrumors 603

    TwinCities Dan

    May 19, 2008
    Double Parked out front of the Courthouse
    I don't remember, I'm sure somebody will come along with more info. :)

    Congrats! :cool:
  3. JediMeister macrumors 68040

    Oct 9, 2008
    In the specs you listed there, it says pretty specifically that its not compatible with AirPort cards. And its a toss-up whether a D-link or some other branded USB-type wireless adapter will work, depending on driver availability, and if the hardware requires USB 2.0. You do not need OS 9 to upgrade to 10.3, but the installation will wipe the drive because you cannot do an upgrade installation, only an erase & install.
  4. SkyBell macrumors 604


    Sep 7, 2006
    Texas, unfortunately.
    To install any version of an older iMac G3 like that, you need to update the firmware which is in the OS 9 installation. Otherwise things go wrong when trying to install OS X.
  5. TwinCities Dan macrumors 603

    TwinCities Dan

    May 19, 2008
    Double Parked out front of the Courthouse
    Really? It's been too long for me (see sig), I guess... :eek:
  6. Willis macrumors 68020


    Apr 23, 2006
    Beds, UK
    Yes you will need OS 9 to then jump to 10.3 and you can use an Airport Express through Ethernet. :) Along with this, you will need to up the HDD size because I'm sure OS X needs about 2-3GB of space to install

    Also, what do you plan to do with the machine?
  7. nickwc thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 8, 2009
    I'm thinkin of using it as a email/itunes/experiment machine. Would it be possible to update the firmware by downloading it without going to os9?
  8. rgarjr macrumors 603


    Apr 2, 2009
    Southern California
    Dude, nice find. Snap some pics of your new toy.
  9. JediMeister macrumors 68040

    Oct 9, 2008
    Sorry about the bad info. Did some more research, found the firmware update the other posters were talking about, but it doesn't say anything about specifically needing OS 9. This is the firmware update chart which tells you which update you need to run, and here is the direct link to update itself and instructions on how to update it. The first article seems to suggest that you need OS 8 or 9 on the startup disk to run the firmware updater.
  10. jodelli macrumors 65816


    Jan 6, 2008
    Windsor, ON, Canada
    IIRC 9.1 was the best OS to do firmware updates and such boot helpers as XPostFacto.
    9.2 didn't work for this because it was designed to support Classic mode.

    You'll find this with some of the old pre X programs as well; for instance early versions of Symantic C+ did not work with 9.2, just
    with standalone Mac OS's such as 8.0 thru 9.1.

    Plus you pretty much need USB 2.0 for wireless dongles, and they won't all work on older Macs. There were a handful of old wireless options at one time that sort of worked in Panther.
  11. chrismacguy macrumors 68000

    Feb 13, 2009
    United Kingdom
    If you do place a bigger drive in it, it will need to be partitioned, as OS X needs to be in the first 8gb of the drive (7gb partition), else it will stop working. (AFAIK anyway).
  12. velocityg4 macrumors 601


    Dec 19, 2004
    For the firmware update download it an try running it. If your version of Mac OS 8 is too old the updater will simply tell you so and refuse to run.

    As for Wifi you would be best off getting a Wireless bridge and connecting that to your Ethernet port. This Edimax EW-7206APG is the cheapest I could find. Though it is an access point it does support bridge mode. You will just have to spend some time messing with the settings.

    If you wanted you can get a Wireless-N access point starting at around $45.

    By the way I do not know why it has not been mentioned yet, perhaps I just did not notice. You will need to upgrade your RAM as 32MB is grossly insufficient for OS X.
  13. nickwc thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 8, 2009
    Yea, I should have updated the specs I listed. Those were from the apple website. It has 256 mb ram.

    I'm thinking that once I install panther I will use an Airport express, since I have been wanting to get one anyway!

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